Tuesday, September 4, 2018

A8 Resettling in Tasmania - A Brief Outline

Resettling in Hobart an Overview

Hobart Early Settlement c1823

When Robert and Elizabeth returned from Norfolk  Island, she was compensated for her lands, with 100 acres at New Town.  The farm was named "Friendly Farm".  Overlaid in today's terms, she owned the suburb of Moonah!   

Friendly Farms

 In the 1811, muster, Elizabeth, being a free settler is not noted, however Robert Jillett is.  Unlike the land grants on Norfolk Island, where the female's names were recorded, that did not occur in Tasmania.

However the land was referred to as "my wife's" land, by Robert.

In Hobart, they were given land by Governor Collins,  and built a house in Collins Street.  Their neighbour was Mrs Catherine Kearney.  Her land was covered with ti-tree, and the convicts cleared it.  Catherine became known as the "Dairy-woman of the Settlement, and she supplied the Government and the officers with milk from her heard.

In 1811, Gov. Macquarie, who replaced Governor Collins who had died, had instructed the Government surveyor Mr Meehan, to draw a new plan of Hobart, which conformed to the new regulations of street layout, and he issued a proclamation as to how dwellings were to be constructed. 

It was found that Elizabeth's house projected onto the proposed Market Square.  This caused considerable distress and reams of communication between the authorities and Robert and Elizabeth.  

In 1812, Governor Macquarie issued orders regarding building in Hobart.

Derwent Star and Van Diemen's Land Intelligencer (Hobart, Tas. : 1810 - 1812), Friday 7 February 1812, page 2 


HEAD QUARTERS, HOBART-TOWN Van Diemen's Land, Sunday the 1st. of Dec. 1811. GOVERNMENT and GENERAL ORDERS.

His EXCELLENCY the GOVERNOR having observed with much regret since his arrival here that the several Public and private Buildings in Hobart-town have hitherto been erected in a very irregular manner and without any plan whatsoever ; has judged it expedient, and essentially necessary for the better appearance of the Town itself, and the accomodation of the Inhabitants, to frame and mark out a regular Plan of it for the future guidance and observance of all such Persons as may be permitted to reside and build in it.

The Acting Surveyor has accordingly by His Excellency's direction marked out with stakes, in appropriate Places, the different Divisions of the Town which is for the present to consist of a large Square nearly in centre of it, and Seven streets, three of them running nearly Parallel the whole length of the Town, and remaining four crossing the three long Streets at right angles. The Governor has named the Square George's Square, in honor of our most Gracious Sovereign, and has given the following names to the Seven Streets, viz. Liverpool Collins and Macquarie are names given to the three long Streets ; Argyle, Elizabeth, Murray and Harrington, being the names given to the four cross Streets ;

 Posts having finger boards nailed on them with the names of the Square and the several streets, having been erected at their respective commencements an determinations, to point out the more accurately the direction of the square and Streets, they are in future to be known and called by the names given them. On the Square it is intended at some future period to erect a Church and Court House or Town Hall, and a main Guard.

It is also intended that a public Market under proper regulations, shall be held in the Centre of it every Saturday, as soon as it can be ascertained whether the Settlers are disposed to bring the produce of their Farms for Sale to this weekly public Market; the Square likewise as it consists of an extensive Area, will answer for the Public Garrison Parade.

No person in future is to presume to build a house of any description in Hobart-town without previously submitting a plan thereof to the Commandant and receiving his Sanction for erecting the same ; such persons as are able and willing to build brick or stone or weather boarded houses of two Stories high 40 ft long by 16ft. broad in the clear, tiled or shingled and properly glazed, will be entitled on entering into security for erecting such a building with-in two years, to receive a Town allotment of 130ft. in front and 132ft. in depth with 21 years Lease of the same from the Governor in Chief, such persons as are not able to build two story houses but are willing and able to erect a House of one story high 36ft. long by 14ft. broad in the clear tiled or shingled and properly glazed on entering into security to erect the same within two years, shall be entitled to receive a 14 years Lease from the Governor in Chief of a Town allotment 60ft. in front and 132ft. in depth:

 His Excellency the Governor has delivered a plan of the Town, as now subdivided and laid out, to the Commandant for his own guidance and also for that of such persons as may wish to receive Town allotments and build Houses in Hobart-town, and to this plan such persons are accordingly referred, it being His Excellency's positive orders that the New plan in question shall be rigidly adhered and conformed to in every respect.

His Excellency the Governor deeming it expedient that a Signal Post should be established in a conspicuous situation in the vicinity and within sight of Hobart-town, for answering the appearance of all ships and vessels seen in the Offing and coming to this Port, has himself Surveyed and fixed upon a proper hill for this purpose, within about 4 miles S. E. of the Town and which he has named Mount Nelson.

The Governor accordingly directs that Captain Murray the Commandant shall issue the necessary orders to the Acting Inspector of Public Works to erect a Flag staff and Guard house on the summit of Mount Nelson, cutting and clearing away all such trees as may obstruct the view of the Sea and the Town ; the Commandant will be pleased to station a Corporals Guard at the signal post on Mount Nelson with the necessary Flags for making Signals, His Excellency the Governor is under the necessity of setting out for Port Dalrymple tomorrow and is sorry he cannot at present prolong his slay at this Settlement, but he trusts he shall be able to visit it soon again when he anticipates the pleasing hope of finding it greatly improved in every respect. ||

 " Signed " By Command of  L. MACQUARIE. HIS EXCELLENCY. || GOVERNOR in CHIEF. " Signed '' H. C. ANTILL, Major of Brigade.

In 1814, a Government Official stated that "there were no titles on record, whereby a right can be claimed, as individual property by Mr Jillett", re the house in Collins Street.

By 1816 they were also living at New Norfolk on Dennis McCarthy's property.  Later in 1816 Robert claimed on the Government Stores for supplies to the government.  He had crop under cultivation, and he had contracts to supply meat.

In 1816 he was granted 140 acres at Risdon.  He did not take this parcel of land up, and did not pay any rent.  However, in 1825 a decision was made by Governor Macquarie, to absolve the payment of any outstanding rents.  There was however, a major backlog in the issuing of land leases.  The Government perspective was that if you were given land, it was yours.  Governor Collins was very liberal with his initial land allocation.

The grant of 140 acres was situated along the Derwent River, and continued to Prince of Wales Bay.  This is now the area of the Risdon Refinery. To Robert, it had no value, he didn't take it up.  Historically today, what would it be worth?

In 1817 he tendered to supply 1500lb of meat to the Government Stores by 28th February 1817.

A notice in the Hobart Town Gazette, 6th Dec, 1817 and 13th December, 1817  Re:  Friendly Farms, Prince of Wales Bay, Newtown, formerly Robert Jillett's Martha Hayes, William Littlefield and Martin Hunt's farm  -  any cattle and sheep found on them will be impounded!    Signed Thomas Wells and Adam Brodribb.

Robert then put in an account to the Commissariat Department for payment of supplies given to parties out in search of the bushrangers at New Norfolk.

In 1818 and probably earlier, Robert Jillett had a grazing licence to September 29th 1819, for a run between Macquarie Springs and Meehan's Valley York Plains.  

Tasmanian Land Grants records of 1819 - 1821 indicate that Robert Jillett was granted 140 acres between New Town Rivulet and Humphrey's Rivulet.

In 1820 A Market Place was opened on part of the land which included Jillett's house in Collins Street, the market opened on January 1st 1820, as indicated in Robert Knopwood's diary.

The grazing licence was again renewed for 12 months from September 1820 to September 1821.  He was still supplying meat to the government.  When he took out the lease he would have had to get permission for a lease, then go and find a suitable place to run his cattle and/or sheep.  After that he would have had to come back to Hobart Town and register the lease and then take his stock to the property.  When he first took out the lease the only complete surveying which had been done was around towns.  Oatlands had not been surveyed at that time.

It is quite possible that the family may had had trouble with aborigines as they were trying to survive amongst the white settlers.  Someone would have had to also stay with the cattle or sheep, for as well as having to contend with bushrangers, sheep stealers and aborigines, there were no fences and the animals would stray.

On March 1820 Robert Jillett signed a memorial to J.T.Bisdee.

In 1820 he was supposed to have received a grant of 140 acres at Argyle (Newtown).  This is possibly the Friendly Farms grant which had been measured as 160 acres and had not been received, even though he had been in possession for some years.  In most cases people were on their granted lands and using them long before their actual piece of official document granting them the use of the land was received.

In 1823 he received a grant of 50 acres at Back River - 30 acres for himself and 20 extra as he was married.  (Back River is now called Magra).

The boys each received 60 acres in Methuen at Back River.  The land was granted to them as Freemen.  This was also in 1823.

The deeds of Robert Jillett, and William and James Bradshaw are different because theirs stated "Freemen" and his "Emancipated convict".

The three grants were all signed by Thomas Brisbane, Governor of New South Wales at that time.

Their Hobart Home.

When a resurvey of Hobart was done, it was found that their house was built  in an incorrect alignment.  But as will be shown in further information, the Governor granted the settlers land, and they took that as meaning it was theirs to do with what they wished.

The problem was the grants were not registered or recorded, and Governor Collins died.

The following Governor Macquarie, was not so generous and organised in 1811 and in 1817 Mr Meehan to resurvey the island.

It was he who then decided that the site of Jillett's house at Collins Street, next to the Barracks should be resumed.

Negotiations were protracted for years. 

The following account of the land dealings was transcribed with Dr John Jillett's initial research.


1. HOBART TOWN 08 NOV 1824 - Surveyor General G.W. Evans to Robert Jillett.

Sir,  His Honour the Lieutenant Governor having deemed it expedient to reoccupy the land on which the house in which you live is standing on --------? occupation, I am instructed to acquaint you that you have the option to receive in exchange such remuneration in land according to the fair value, as may be settled by negotiation, otherwise it will be necessary to assess the same by a Jury as the resumption thereof will immediately take place.
                                                   I have the honour to be
                                                                 Sir   Your very obedient Humble Servant
                                                                               G.W. Evans     Surveyor General  V. D. L.

Hobart Town November 17th 1824
Mr Harris, the surveyor in the year 1810 when the first division of settlers and inhabitants from Norfolk Island were landed on this island, thee was then no plan or regulation.  Individuals placed themselves where they chose and probably Con. Collins might have allowed Mr Jillett to occupy the land he has built upon and now hold possession of.  Consequently when the town was laid out by me in 1811, I was necessitated to mark out and bisect the streets so as to leave clear all tolerable buildings, notwithstanding many inferior cottages interfered so much that they were valued and purchased by Government to be pulled down, this circumstance accounts for many of the streets running diagonal.  In these arrangements part of the land surrounding Mr. Jillett's house was cut off by Collins and Campbell Streets, and it is now to be observed on the angles of the house projects into Collins Street.  There are no titles on record whereby a right to the land can be claimed as individuals property by Mr. Jillett, that in all cases of valuations previously taken place it had only been the buildings which have occupied consideration, but upon application an allotment has usually been allowed.
G.W. Evans  Surv. G.  VDL.

Engineers Office  6th Dec. 1824
I beg leave to forward the ground plan and elevation of a house ordered to be erected for Mr. Jillett.
The expenses of tending the erection of two rooms in this plan are to be defrayed by Mrs. Jillett.
I have the honour to be sir
Your most Obt Servant,
Sydney Cotton  Acting Engineer

To His Honor   Lieut Gov. Arthur

2.  HOBART TOWN, 17NOV1824  , Memorandum from G.W. Evans (to the Colonial Secretary's Office?), setting out the past history of land occupation in the lower area of the town.{copy at hand}


Mr Harris was Surveyor in the year 1810 when the first division of settlers and inhabitants from Norfolk Island were landed on this Island, there was then no Plan or regulations, individuals placed themselves where they chose and probably Col. Collins might have allowed Mr Jillett to occupy the Land he has Built upon and now holds possession of.  Consequently when the Town was laid out by me in 1812 I was necessitated to Mark and Bisect the Streets so as to leave clear all tolerable buildings, notwithstanding many inferior cottages interfered so much that they were valued and purchased by Government to be pulled down, this circumstance accounts for many of the Streets running diagonal.

  In these arrangements part of the Land surrounding Mr Jillett's House was cut off by Collins and Campbell Streets and it is now to be observed one of the Angles of the House projects into Collins Street. -  There are no Titles on Record whereby a right to the Land can be Claimed as Individual property by Mr Jillett, that in all the cases of valuation previously taken place it has been only the Buildings which have occupied consideration, but upon application an allotment has usually been allowed.
                                                                                        G.W. Evans      Surveyor  V.D.L.
3.  ENGINEER'S OFFICE                                                                     06 DEC 1824, 

Sir,  I beg leave to forward the ground plan and elevation of a house to be erected for Mr Jillett.
the expenses attending to the erection of 2 rooms in this house are to be defrayed by Mrs Jillett
Note:  Much of the following correspondence revolves around just what was agreed by Captain Cotton with the Jilletts, in the absence of any written record!]

I have the honor to be Sir, Your most Obt. Servant,
Sydney Cotton Acting Engineer.


To Lieutenant Governor Arthur - Memorial of Robert Jillett requesting a grand of land, dated 24th February 1825.

His Honour
Lieutenant Governor Arthur

Memorial of Robert Jillett 

Most humbly and respectfully sheweth that Your Honor's Memorialist - Free man having a wife and ten children born in these colonies, and himself twenty seven years a resident - having by his industry acquired two hundred head of cattle - upwards of five hundred sheep four horses and other live stock having had only the indulgence of a fifty acres of land for Government - forty of which are under cultivation and having expended much money and labour in improving his land - in building and accumulating stock respectfully submits to Your Honour's consideration the detriment his numerous stock must sustain for want of grazing ground and the great inconvenience and expense resulting from moving his said stock from place to place - his desire also of increasing his cultivation for the benefit of his large rising family - humbly solicit Your Honour in your wanted dissensions and goodness - will be pleased to grant Memorialist such quantity of land as may enable him to graze his increasing stock and advance his agricultural pursuits.

And as in Duty bound Your Honor's Memorialist will ever Pray Robert Jillett.

I know the statement of the petitioner to be correct, and beg leave to recommend him to the favourable consideration of Government.                       T. W. Danilles
                                                            Rev R Knopwood JP

Accompanying note

·        Robert Jillett received 130 acres in 1812 his Norfolk Island claim and 50 acres in 1820 which I believe he cultivates.                     G.W Evans
·        Land is to be given to this person (300 acres I think) for the house taken .....(From) him the Market Place
·        The family house and land
·        As he has just received the land in exchange for this house I think he should be satisfied.  (Int)

4.     HOBART TOWN 15JUN1825,  Robert Jillett to His Honor, Lieut Govr. Arthur, VDL (copy at hand)

Sir,  Your Honor I trust will pardon this liberty solicitation you will be pleased in your goodness to favour me with the order for three hundred acres of land "according to Contract with the Crown" for the removal of the house situate in Collins Street - as I am desirous of having the said land measured with land in my possession at York Plains,
                                       Your Honor's consideration will oblige
                                                                               Your Honor's             Most Devoted Servant
                                                                                    Robert Jillett
Note to this letter
This certainly appears to me a most objectionable arrangement and Mr Hamilton had better go fully into the merits of the case.  Let the Government do whatever they have engaged, but to look at the miserable hut occupied by Jillett and the house erecting in exchange together with the consideration of 300 acres of land, seems very unaccountable.   17th June.

Hobart Town,   24th June 1825, 

Sydney Cotton    Acty Eng.

I think, as we have so much on our hands that it will be better that we.....do no more than is required, and I suggest it will be .... for Captn Cotton to send for Mrs Jillett upon the subject.  (Int)
I will roof in the house and endeavour to make some arrangements about the completion of the interim work.

Sydney Cotton   Acty Eng
4.  HOBART TOWN 12SEP1825 (copy at hand) -  Robert Jillett to Lieutenant Governor Arthur.
             In consequence of the House I now reside in needing great repair and perceiving no prospect of my family's removing into the House ordered by your Honor to be built for me according to Contract -as several weeks have elapsed since any work has been carried out- I solicit Your Honor's answer that it may ascertain whether I shall be necessitated to put this House into thorough repair - as my family is much inconvenienced in it - as well as through the want of repairing the House- as being surrounded by water on account of the overflowing of the new  Cut - or if immediate attention to the Building being carried on is to much consideration
                                                  With great respect I beg to subscribe
                                                   Myself            Sir
                                                                     Your Honor's   most devoted Servant
                                                                             Robert Jillett
       * Cut refers to diversion of the lower Hobart Rivulet which was undertaken in 1825, without much success in the first instance as it flooded repeatedly with much inconvenience to local inhabitants.

5.  Advice from the Engineer's Office to the Colonial Secretary that:

       "When Captn. Cotton offered with Jillett to build the house for him, Jillett offered to pay the difference between the value of the his former house and the cost of the new house but here was no record in writing and the affair is proving difficult".


6.  Colonial Service, Weekly Returns, Engineer's Office,  09JAN1826

·      advising, "tendered costs of labour for carpentry and joinery work in the house now building in Campbell Street for Mrs Jillett in compensation for the one which is to be pulled down for the new Market Place and to state for the information of Your Excellency that the tenders of Samuel Bird for the sum of Eighty pounds are in my opinion a very fair offer.
                                                          I have the Honor to be" etc.

7.  Colonial Architect (Lambe) to Engineer's Office, 09MAR1826

       - request to ascertain whether Samuel Bird's tender includes costs agreed to be borne by Jillett.

8.  Lumberyard to Lieutenant Governor, 13APR1826

       - objecting to certain costs not having been met for roofing the house for Mr Jillett, in the absence of proper plans having been supplied.

Full details
                                                                                                Lumber Yard
                                                                                                13th April 1826

Sir, Having received a notice from Major Kirkwood stating that I am to be charged with an expense as incurred thro' my having put a projecting roof on the house building for Mr. Jillett. 
I beg leave respectfully to acquaint your Excellency that I never had a working plan of that building and as I was left to exercise my own judgement, I acted as I should have done had the house been for the service of Government.  had I framed the roof without any projection, I can say with the greatest propriety the expense would have been at least four times as I understand I am to be charged with - and it is not so much the object of that trifle as the principle, as I can assure your Excellency I have had the interest of the service in view - I trust your Excellency will be pleased to direct that in future I may be furnished with a working plan which will prevent a like occurrence and shew a sight whether the designer or the person who executes has acted right - the roof finished in the way it now is causes a much greater tie to the wall than it would have had - if the rafter had lain on the plat - and I trust your Excellency will be pleased to refer it to Mr Lambe for his opinion thereon.

  I am Sir With the greatest respect Your obd humble servant.  Signed.

Sir  In my agreement with Captain Cotton it was understood I should be supplied with firewood which has been done till lately and as it has been again extended to several of the sups. thro' their agreements - I trust your Excellency will be pleased to allow me the same. 
9.  Surveyor to Colonial Secretary 13Apr1826

-  advises "about £ 20 would be the amount Jillett should pay for the additional rooms"
-  becomes terse over Jillett's suggestion that Government should pay for repair of his present house,
-  proposes that work resume on the new house, Jillett to pay additional costs before possession -  "he would pay it, I have not the least doubt". 

Full details

Explaining circumstances connected with Mrs Jillett's house - a projecting roof.

The business appears to have stopped with the receipt of the tenders for Carpenters Work sic January the Authority have been given hereupon
Mr Lambe states that about £20 would be the account Jillett should pay for the additional rooms - it could therefore perhaps be advisable for the work to be gone on with and, if the money were not forthcoming Jilletts note could be taken before he obtained possession; he would pay it I have not the least doubt.
If Jillett means in  his letter of 21st June that Government should refit his present house, would the outlay on that.............tenement be compensated to Government by the possession of the new premises  while his remaining in the Market Place would of that establishment be..........................

Accompany notes

·        This is a very different statement from Major Kirkwood
·        Let me see his former report and perhpas it may be necessary to revise my opinion.  
29th Apl (Int)
                                                                                                W.H.H. (Hamilton
Mr Worthy...............................


The Acting Engineer is requested to peruse the statement of Mr Hartley Superintendent of Carpenters (explanatory of the cause which lead him to form the projecting roof on the house building for Mrs Gillett) and make any observation thereon which may appear to be necessary.

By Command of His Excellency

W.H. Hamilton
Acting Colonial Secretary.

10.  Correspondence on costs for house being built for Mrs Jillett 09MAY1826

Colonial Secretary's Office
May 9th 1926

(Acting) Colonial Secretary
No 287v
When I made Mr Worthy acquainted through the medium of Mr Simmons with His Excellency's decision on the additional expense of the projection roof to Mrs Gillett's house.  He told Mr Simmons he would not pay it and came to my office after some conversation I told him if he could fairly remonstrate his charge through me, I would have no objection to submit to His Excellency - I find he has sent the remonstrance is his usual irregular way direct to His Excellency - and I submit that this mode of proceeding should not be allowed in a subordinate officer to pass over the head of a Department - exclusive of giving a great deal of unnecessary trouble - it returning the papers on this matter I hope Mr Worthy will be directed to address his letter to me, to which I shall attach my observations.
T. Kirkwood

Engineer's Office     17th May 1826
PS  I return only the letter.

10.  Correspondence on costs for house being built for Mrs Jillett 09MAY1826

11.  Robert Jillett to His Honor    21JUN1826

·        objections to conditions he and his family are living in "especially at this wet season" on account of delays to progress on the new house,
·        argues for repairs at Government expense to his present house,
·        requests prompt completion of the new house or be allowed to refit and keep possession of his present premises.

12.  Robert Jillett to His Honor Lieutenant Governor Arthur, no readable date)(copy at hand).

Sir,  I most humbly beg leave to represent to Your Honor that I am called upon to furnish ten Window frames for the house Building for me according to Government contract - I respectfully solicit Your Honor's consideration to prevent my incurring such expenses as such furnishing would bring on my large family - I shall be ready to supply H. M. Stores with meat agreeable to my contraction on the completion of the two extra Rooms - and humbly trust I may meet your Honor's attention to countermand the order of my supplying the said Window  frames - I am Sir with most profound respect                                                           Your Honor's most devoted Sert.
                                                                                  Robert Jillett

Marginal recommendation: I have already spoken to the Commissary upon this subject - if it can be done with propriety and until  I  ???? have no objection to allow Mr Jillett to retain his dwelling  23rd June

13.   Memorandum 08OCT1826

       -  re bargain between Captain Cotton, late Acting Engineer, regarding the exchange of an allotment in the intended new Market Place for a lot of land and a house to be erected in Campbell Street.

Relative to being called upon to supply window frames for the house at present building for houses and remuneration for one  --- to Government and tolerating the Lieutenant Governors

Dear Sir

Mrs Jillett has been at my office about her house - all that was required Department from this has been done mainly to roof and to shingle it.

A Board sat some time since and recommended the interior work to be done by contract.  The two additional rooms Government had nothing to do with
Yours truly
T. Kirkwood
Engineer's Office
12th October 1826.

Accompany notes (Do not appear to relate to the above)

I own    (authority) rity, could be necessary I imagine to be received from this person for the repayment of any expenditure on the part of Government towards the completion of the two rooms in the house which were arrange to be built as Mr Gillett expects.  The house must be proceeded with - the roof pun on when Mr Gillett must either pay for the completion of the house or do it by his own means.

Hobart Town Octr. 28th 1826
In obedience to His Excellency's instructions of the 23rd inst. We have endeavoured to come to an arrangement with regard to a bargain made by Captain Cotton, the late Acting Engineer, with Mr Jillett for a house and allotment of his, situated in the intended Market Place, and which he had exchanged for a lot of land, and a house to be erected thereon in Campbell Street.
It does not appear that any written agreement was entered into, nor did the documents furnished to us, throw much light on the matter.  One letter of Capt. Cotton's appears, dated Oct 6th 1824, which merely mentions the ground plans and elevation of a house ordered to be erected to Mr. Jillett, who insisted he was to have a three stall stable built for him also, and is well aware was he of having the advantage, that we found considerable difficulty in prevailing on his to relinquish his claim, he had an excellent house built for him, roof in, nothing remaining to be done to it, but inside work which when perfected would render the House, worth at least five hundred pounds.
To give  up his little to this new House and Premises, he demanded four hundred pounds, six hundred acres of land, and a piece of land which had been called Major Bell's.  This offer we could by no means listed to.  We beg to forward to you for His Excellency's information Mr. Jillett's final demand.
"The sum of Four Hundred pounds and that lot of ground commonly called Major Bells - bounded
·        On the North by Mr. Kemp's
·        On the East, by Mr. J. Archer
·        On the South by the Rivulet and
·        On the West by the intended Market Place.
From the irregular manner in which the business has been arranged in the first instance we beg to say we consider the above agreement if entered into, a judicious one.
The House which has been built for Mr. Jillett in Campbell Street, is in a most commodious situation for the Superintendent of Convicts, central as it is to the Prisoners Barracks and the Intended Lumber Yard, and it only requires finishing inside to make it worth full five hundred pounds.  His Excellency therefore merely exchanges one lot of ground for another and we do not consider that four hundred pounds is more than sufficient to enable Mr Jillett to build a House which by the original contract Capt Cotton had engaged to perfect.
We have the honor  to be  Sir
Your most obedient Humble servants
E. Dumaresq, Peter Murdock Rodric O'Connor.
Accompanying notes
·        It is not what a Board.... but what was ordered to be done - It seems so evident that in some way or other the House might when completed, let me see the report he alluded to  16th Oct. (Init)
·        There is one material point not reported quite distinctly.    It is the site of the lot called Major Bell's clearly vested in the Government.  I with the Surveyor General would call  upon Major Bell's representatives to state their claims upon which he may furnish his remarks, and the whole may then finally be disposed of    7th Novr. (Int)
·        Letter to Surveyor-General to this effect.                    W.H.H.
15.    28 OCT 1826   To Lieutenant Governor Arthur
Memoriam   of  Robert Jillett 

              most humbly and respectfully  shew

That -  Your Honor's Memorialist - Free Man- having a Wife and Ten Children born in these Colonies - and himself Twenty seven Years a resident - having by his industry acquired - Two hundred head of Cattle - upwards of Five hundred Sheep Four Horses and other live Stock - and having had only the indulgence of Fifty Acres of Land from Government - Forty acres of which are in cultivation and having expended much Money and labour in improving his Land and Buildings and accumulating Stock respectively submits to Your Honor's consideration, the detriment his numerous Stock must sustain for want of grazing ground and the great inconvenience and expence resulting from moving his said Stock from place to place  - his desire also of increasing his cultivation for the benefit of his large rising family - humbly solicits Your Honor in your wanted condescension and goodness - will be pleased to grant Memorialist such quantity of Land as may enable him to graze his increasing Stock and advance his agricultural pursuits
                                                            And as, in Duty bound Your
                                                             Honor's Memorialist will ever Pray
                                                                                    Robert Jillet
I know the statement of the Petitioner to be  correct and beg leave to recommend him                                                  to the  favorable consideration of Government
                                                                           Signature unreadable
Note on margin:   Robert Jillett received 130 (?) Acres in 1812 his Norfolk Island claim, and 50 Acres  (18)20 which I believe he .....          G.W. Evans


17.  07JAN1827, Mrs  Jillett offers to accept £400 and the allotment

Hobart Town
January 7th  1827
Mrs Gillett came to my office this morning saying she was directed to do so by His Excellency, and that I was to take down in writing what she had to say relative to her house.
She told me that she would take £400 and the allotment of Ground adjoining to Capt Briggs store, or the one next to it as a compensation for the new house which has been building for her and giving up her ......residence to Government.        I  ......L.L.
C. Arthur Esq

January 7th

In consequence of the Surveyors note, I have written to Mrs Jillett to .....she will state by whose farm the land she applies for is bounded and the exact extent in acres - but since that I have had a conversation on the subject with the Engineer who says he has ascertained that the only agreement which ever was made with Mrs. Jillett (and that was mostly verbal) was that she was to have a house as good as her own and three hundred acres of land but that Capt. Cotton afterwards agreed to build for her two additional rooms for which she was to pay.
The Engineer now therefore suggest that if her house in its present state is given to her and no claim for the two rooms as it is a much better house than the Government was obliged to build.  She will be amply compensated for the one she is to give up; and the Engineer wishes for an authority to settle the transaction upon these terms on all the ground between Capt. Briggs store and the Australian Company's is disposable.  I have explained to Mrs Jillett the nature of the building which must be erected on one of these allotments.    (Init)
Accompanying note
The Surveyor General will report when there is land disposable for this purpose adjoining Capt Briggs store.        8th January.

16.  Robert Jillett to His Honor, 29MAY1827

To His Excellency Lieut Governor Arthur                      May 29th 1827

Back of the Green Water Ponds  ....in the..........Government.  And should.......sanction to all .... the.... I will then  undertake to complete my house in Campbell Street.  My notice in making.....for the allotment has a ..... the House.  And should it not meet Your Honour's approbation I trust you will be so good as to fulfil your contract as soon as possible has .........placed a great inconvenience by the House not being finished.

Accompanying notes

·        I think the better plan will be for the Govt to complete Mrs Jillett's building, and I had hoped the engineer might soon have been able to proceed with it  ...at the same time if it really is a small allotment, in the midst of so much work it may be a relief... I should wish therefore a report from the Survey Department as to extent of the allotment desired and any other local circumstances connected with it.     I am (Int)
·        To Surveyor General       2.7
·        The land mentioned in this letter is so indefinitely described that it is impossible to ascertain the spot alluded to or the quantity required.
·        The applicant should state by whose farms the land is bounded and the supposed extent in acres.  (Init) 4th June
·        Prepare a letter and reply to Mrs Jillett.

Minute 143
Agreement respecting Mrs Jillett's House
15th June
Inform the Engineer that I have now considered his memorandum containing the proposition for Mrs. Jillett's house, that in place of the house being completed in Campbell Street, she should receive five hundred acres of land at the Green Water Ponds, free of the restriction of cultivation only.
It is reported by the Surveyor General that the land is very bad and unfit for cultivation.  I approve of this arrangement but the grant is to be subject to all other restrictions and conditions except those of cultivation.
The Crown Solicitor will see that Mrs Jillett's property is regularly made over to the Crown.  Geo Arthur
Accompanying notes
·        The understanding that if she reject them he is to have the power to declare the bargains from the commencement null and void and to inform her that the land will be resumed.  (Int)
·        I will consent to any proposition which does not  (dispute)....tute against the "good faith" of the Gov.
9th June. (Init)

18.  Lieutenant Governor to Colonial Secretary 10JUN1827.
agreeing to Mrs Jillett's proposal that she should receive 500 acres of land at the Green Water Ponds, free of the  normal restriction on cultivation, in place of the house being completed in Campbell Street.  There is a note that the Surveyor General considers the land at the Green Ponds of poor quality and unsuitable for cultivation in any case.

19.    Transaction actually completed 06JUN1828.

Robert and Elizabeth were quite shrewd in their business dealings!!!!   The local newspapers were critical of the way the Government handled funds.

Colonial Times and Tasmanian Advertiser (Hobart, Tas. : 1825 - 1827), Friday 26 August 1825, page 3

The Palladio Bridge, and the New Cut. —The mizzling rain which fell on Tuesday had the effect of raising the water in the rivulet to within about four or five feet of its usual height at this season of the year. On Wednesday the "New Cut" was completely over-flowed. The water fortunately made a breach in the celebrated stone walls at the junction of the Cut with the Rivulet, by which the main current ran off; and another breach having been effected by the Government artists, at the back of Mrs. Gillet's premises, the Palladio Bridge has been preserved from destruction, which otherwise would inevitably have followed. If the rain continues so that the Rivulet rises to its ordinary winter height, and if there should happen to be a high spring tide, the Cut must be thrown open to the old channel, or the whole of the houses near the area, said to be intended for the Market-place, will be completely flooded.

Mrs. Gillet's house was all Wednesday wholly inaccessible, except by a few feet near the foot-bridge. So much for erecting bridges and making "Cuts" by persons wholly ignorant of the localities of the Colony, and indeed whose ignorance is their best excuse. The sums which have been thrown away in these fooleries are much larger than are supposed. We shall continue this subject.


The bridge, now erecting by Messrs. Kemp and Co., and other individuals, at their private expense, over the rivulet at the proposed new market-place, will shortly be open for passengers.
We understand that it is not intended to remove the Seat of Government from Hobart
Town to New Norfolk, until advices are received from England, upon that important subject.

Colonial Times and Tasmanian Advertiser (Hobart, Tas. : 1825 - 1827) Friday 27 October 1826

Colonial Times and Tasmanian Advertiser (Hobart, Tas. : 1825 - 1827) Friday 1 December 1826
We very lately alluded to a negotiation on the part of Government, for the purchase of Mrs. Gilletts house, situated in Campbell street, and which has so long been erecting. We now learn that Mrs. Gillett has refused the £600 offered by the Government ; and, in consequence, orders have been given that the house be finished forthwith.
Colonial Times and Tasmanian Advertiser (Hobart, Tas. : 1825 - 1827) Friday 14 September 1827
From the late and rapidly proceeding improvements in that part of the town, landed property in the vicinity of the new Market- place is already enhanced in value from 25 to 35 per cent. Six hundred pounds were offered and refused lately for a single allotment in Collins-street.

Whilst living in Hobart, Elizabeth had several convict women to assist her.  They included  Ann Smallman a servant who could wash and iron  She was assigned to Elizabeth in 1820, but only for a few months.  She then married Edward Hale.

Mary James, she was assigned to Elizabeth again for only a few months, as on several occasions she appeared to be drunk and disorderly, and she was found in the house of John McKenna, in bed with a man named Sutherland!

Susan Sandford, she couldn't write, and was found absent without leave from her Mistress's premises, and sent to the factory for assignment.

Margaret Hill, she was a widow with two children, and she could cook, wash and get up linen.  She left for striking her mistress! and was sentenced to 6 months in the House of Correction.  She also had a further 36 appearances for drunkenness!

Map of Hobart with houses locations  1829

From the Official Records of 1827 - Robert Jillett had a house in Collins Street, but when the Government wanted to realign the streets etc, and build a new market place Jillett's House had to go.
He then decided to have two extra rooms added.  The Government told him he had to pay for these himself.  The late rains held up work among other things.  He was offered a new house in Campbell Street as compensation.  

Then Robert asked why he hadn't finished the inside, he said he could not afford to and asked the Government to do it for him implying it was in the contract.  This fell through so he asked for £400 and a lot of ground as compensation.  Then for 500 acres at Green Water Ponds.

From the Alfred Stephens minute 143 of June 1827, from the Colonial Secretary "...inform the engineer that I have considered his recommendation, containing the proposition respecting Mrs Jillett's house, that in place of the house being completed in Campbell Street she should receive 500 acres at Green Water Ponds, free of the restriction of cultivations only.

The archives office do not hold the grant on micro-film, however it was to be rented at 2d per acre.

The evidence is then that Robert owned a house in Campbell Street, taken in lieu of the house in Collins Street. 

They also owned a second house in Hobart, this one was weatherboard.

In 1829 Robert and Elizabeth Jillett transferred to W. Young a site at Liverpool Street Hobart.

At his death in 1832, Robert's will indicated he owned two Hobart properties. The question is does that include the one transferred to William Young, which seems hardly likely, or is there another Hobart property that is unknown.

Robert Jillett will excerpt:

I further give and bequeath to James Bradshaw and William Bradshaw Ten Acres of Land Each bounded by James Walsh's farm at the Back River New Norfolk- to them and there Heirs for Ever and I do Hereby at my decease give to my Wife Two Dwelling Houses, one Brick House and one Wether Boarded situated lying and being in Collins Street Hobart Town- during her Life and at her decease the said described Dwelling Houses to my Two Sons Thomas and John Gillett

 -To them and their Heirs for Ever- but the same Houses are to be held in Charge of my Wife for there Several benefits until they shall Each arrive at Age for the purpose of my Wife's Maintenance of them-  I do hereby Lastly wish it to be understood that I have taken into my consideration to hereby revoke my gift of the Whether Boarded House as above described to my Wife-Thomas Gillett-and John Gillett to Have and to Hold the same for any time Longer than my Son Robert Gillett shall arrive at the Age of Twenty One Years- then It shall be Lawful for the said Robert Gillett to the go and take Possession of the same which I have this day given and bequeathed to my Son Robert Gillett His Heirs and assigns for Ever and the said Robert Gillett shall have with the said House the proportion of Land as does belong to it- I do hereby wish it to be fully understood- the Cattle and Sheep which will at my decease be committed to my Wife's Trust and Charge for my Children -
The weatherboard house, he bequeathed to Robert Jillett Junior.


Collins Street Hobart   The Area was known as Wapping.

Hobart Town Gazette and Southern Reporter (Tas. : 1816 - 1821), Saturday 19 October 1816, page 1
STATE OF THE WIFE MARKET! - Some time ago an inhabitant of this settlement sold his wife to another for fifty Ewes &c. within these few days another husband bent upon raising the wind, brought his wife to market; but the sale being dull she only procured for him FIVE POUNDS and a gallon of rum, "for grieving's a folly." Thus we may conclude, that the prices of this new sort of merchandize are on the decline !


Curious Hobart: What is the history of the old district known as Wapping?
By Ros Lehman   Updated 26 Jan 2018
Was it really a disease-ridden slum?

Robyn Everist, who has been taking tourists around Wapping since 2010, points out that while the district was poor, local services met many of their needs; milliners, a butcher, a school and even a barrister.

Wapping had its own Ragged School, a Hobart version of the free education which charities ran in Victorian England.

"The organisation which set up the school wanted to differentiate between the schools being provided for the fine elite folk of society and those recipients of charity, to put you in your place to make sure you knew you were lower class. You were able to be educated, but your future serving higher classes was controlled," Mrs Everist said.

She believes former convict Ikey Solomon is also likely to have been a Wapping resident.
It's said Solomon was one of the characters from London's Wapping on whom Charles Dicken based his Oliver Twist character, Fagin.

Solomon's shady reputation as a trainer of pickpockets and receiver of stolen goods preceded his arrival in the 1820s in Hobart where he set up as a tobacconist and made a successful attempt to reunite with his wife.

"There was cholera and typhoid outbreaks in Hobart not just down there as a result of poor sanitation, particularly around the rivulet, right up until the mid-19th century until the council got its act together."

Tour guide, Mrs Everist said Wapping got a bad rap because it was full of people who "liked a rowdy life, who drank far too much and weren't part of fine society".

"It got this bad reputation of being somewhere you don't want to go, a slightly dangerous place to go.
"But the people who lived here saw it completely differently. They saw themselves as a nice close-knit community, able to help your neighbours and look after your own."

But there is no escaping the seedy side and its reputation of being on-the-nose was accurate, given the nearby industries and the fact it was at the end of the Hobart rivulet — the city's early sewer.
The reputation for crime and vice was not surprising given the proliferation of pubs and prostitutes; 15 on one corner alone recorded in one early statistic.

In the early days drinking holes for seafarers, British troops and the navy dotted the area, with 13 pubs in just a few blocks.

"There certainly were lot of pubs downs there but there were also a lot in the city — they were smaller .. neighbourhood bars like we are going back to now almost," Mr Sprod said.
"Hobart was a very busy whaling port and seamen of that type came off the boats with lots of money and wanting a bit of entertainment and recreation."

Much of the area's early social history is garnered from newspaper reports recording crimes ranging from publicans taking out orders to stop wives from drinking to some truly grisly murders.
In one particularly nasty crime in the 1820s, John Leach brutally stabbed his wife to death with a stick. He left her with horrific injures but despite crying out for help for 30 minutes, no-one came to her aid.

Leach went to the gallows for his actions which he believed were fully justified by her behaviour, described at the time as "unfeminine".
There are also accounts of seamen drinking themselves to death.
"There was a high influx of sailors and whalers who would be living away for many months and then they get off their ships and some drank themselves to death," she said.
Mr Sprod said the demographic was mixed and while prostitutes were heavily linked with the area, some of them came from outside Wapping.

"Although it was quite poor down there, they were poor but honest and, in fact, the district was probably really dominated by people who worked in the local industries," he said.
"It was a mixture of both, clearly the waterfront area had a lot of colourful life but the Wapping district was quite closely packed with housing and plenty of people who were decent upstanding citizens."
Mrs Everist said the residents protected their own.

"People who grew up here felt they were quite safe, you don't pick on your own. You might mug an interloper, mug a whaler who has got lots of money because he wasn't a local."

Above ground, the Theatre Royal and a church used by the Mission to Seafarers in Campbell Street are the major structures remaining, as well as the gasworks' chimney and remnants of brick walls.
Below ground, excavations for buildings such as the $90 million cultural perform arts centre, have revealed glimpses of former Wapping life.

Under the Menzies Centre on Liverpool Street, just on the outskirts, are examples of drains and cobble stones of yesteryear now encased in glass showcases.

None of the watering holes survive but the remnants of one — the Red Lion — still exist in the venue which was a favourite live music haunt of locals in the 1970s and 80s.

A fire place and part of an exterior wall remain from the pub which had four name changes and is now absorbed into a hotel apartment complex on Macquarie Street.

"It [Wapping] has been built over and been forgotten," Ms Everist said.

"It's really hard to remember an entire community once all of the buildings have been bulldozed."
But despite this, she encourages visitors and residents alike to "get digging" and learn more about early Wapping.

"I've met people with older relatives who have memories of this area and that's where we get these stories from people who say 'no, it was a nice, tight-knit community'," she said.


"The council was required to take care of the unsanitary conditions and back in the late 1890s they had grand plans for reinvigorating, but it all came to nothing," she said.

"It was much easier to condemn all of those little homes and move the people out to the suburbs and put in light industry.

"That's when the council put in better sewerage and plumbing and redirected the rivulet underground and further back at Macquarie Point.

In the 1990s the Hobart City Council tried to reinvigorate the area with affordable apartment living.

The Sullivan's Cove planning document stated:

The Wapping area should provide a high quality and stimulating residential environment and enjoyable, secure, safe and convenient routes for cars, pedestrians and cyclists.
The area should develop as a lively "people place" centred on Collins Street and sheltered or buffered on the high traffic edges.

But the new locals tend to disappear into the apartments which are worth upwards of $500,000, and a far cry from the original dwellings.

An attempt to reinstate the name was also part of the plan, but many Hobartians would struggle to tell you the location of the modern-day Wapping.

The people of Wapping were working class employed by the nearby factories — jam, tanneries, ice, soap, gasworks and a slaughter house among them — which were established near the Hunter Street wharf.
Mrs Everist said Wapping disappeared through neglect and lack of forethought.



William Bradshaw's hotel  The Jolly Sailor He had the lease of the Jolly Sailor Pub in 1819
William Young's hotel was the Union Hotel, on the corner of Liverpool and Campbell Street Hobart. In 1827 William Young had the lease of the Union Pub.  

Also living in Hobart was Susannah and Charles Dowdell.  He had a small butcher shop

Susannah leased the Victoria Hotel  (Terminus Hotel)

Some Family Milestones in Hobart

1829    Lands (a Liverpool site)   transferred to William Young
1832     William Young advertising a property cnr Liverpool and Campbell Street for rent.
1839     William and Rebecca living at New Town
1840      Rebecca living at cnr Liverpool and Campbell Street (birth of child)
1840      William advertised for a servant for the property
1842      William and Rebecca living at Liverpool and Campbell Street.
1848      Rebecca advertising a property for rent in Davy Street
1850      William was selling properties at New Norfolk
1850       William transferred his rights over the property to Rebecca April 

1850       Rebecca advertised the house for rent.
1852       Advertising the New Town property to rent.
1856       Her daughter Elizabeth lived next door at 9 Liverpool Street
1856       Rebecca was in trouble with not paying staff

1857       Confirmed by John Guest (their nephew) from 45 Campbell confirmed as living next door 

1862       William was bankrupt
1863        Properties being sold.
1866      William died at his residence corner of Campbell and Liverpool Street Hobart.
1867       Rebecca in a Court hearing over Equity Jurisdiction
1868       John Jillett died at his sister's residence 11 Liverpool Street Hobart (cnr Campbell)

1872       Sarah Ann Young m John William Lindsay  died at the same address  (daughter)

1879        Death of Rebecca Elizabeth Young.

YOUNG. - On February 14, at her late residence, No.10, Liverpool-street, Elizabeth Rebecca Young, relict of the late Captain William Young, of Hobart Town, aged 73. 

Signed and dated lower right.
Title supplied by Sir William Crowther.

Inscribed in ink on verse in Sir William Crowther's hand 'Campbell St next corner of Campbell Liverpool st. Now Children's Hospital Site(?). Now the site of the Medical School: and attached to the R Hobart Hospital WLC 29-5-71'.
One of a series of sketches done for Sir William Crowther by the artist about 1926 [sic] from memory or partially from old illustrations.
Condition: Acidic window mount. Work adhered to mount with masking tape.[1]

[1] Tasmanian Archives

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